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Meet the Leica X-E, an almost-affordable APS-C compact

Zach Honig
September 16, 2014
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Leica just released an update to its X2 point-and-shoot camera here at Photokina. The X-E has a look and feel that's very similar to its predecessor, with comparable specs as well. There's a 16.5-megapixel APS-C sensor that, like the X model also announced today, can capture images with a level of quality that rivals that of many DSLRs. What you can't do, unfortunately, is swap in a different lens -- there's a 24mm f/2.8 optic permanently attached, which is what you'd expect given the light weight and compact size, but if you need to get closer to your subject, you'll need to walk forward rather than zoom in.

Gallery: Leica X-E hands-on | 19 Photos

As with all APS-C sensors, the X-E's has a crop factor of 1.5x, making that 24mm lens equivalent to a 35mm optic on a full-frame camera. There's a 230k-dot (low-res) 2.7-inch LCD, a 5 fps continuous shooting mode and a top sensitivity of ISO 12,500. The X-E does not, however, shoot video, which is quite disappointing given the price. At €1,490 in Europe or $1,795 in the US, you might be better off spending an extra grand for Sony's full-frame RX1, but if a Leica's what you're after, this is a decent choice. The X-E is available now through select retailers.

Gallery: Leica X-E | 14 Photos

Edgar Alvarez contributed to this report.

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